This past weekend was my BIGGEST wedding of the season! Lisa & Chris planned a food and wine festival themed wedding for over 150 people, and mostly all the decor and tablescapes were DIYed (I think I can now add Floral Design to my resume … uh yeah right – totally kidding). It would have never been possible without the help of some seriously awesome people, and Lisa & Chris’ super awesome family! My husband dutifully hung lanterns and helped with the escort station, and Jessica with Jessica Adams Designs was key to making the tables, centerpieces, and food stations look absolutely perfect. I cannot thank both of them enough.
There will be a LOT MORE to come from Chris & Lisa’s wedding (though I did post some sneak peaks on my Instagram!) but for now while these two jet off onto their honeymoon, I thought I’d share their adorable bowling alley engagement thanks to J/K Photography.
Lisa & Chris’ Bowling Alley Engagement Session in Maryland
Lisa & Chris are part of a bowling league, so having their engagement pictures at a bowling alley just made way too much sense. They also had their rehearsal dinner at a bowling alley too (which I love!).
How they met (from the bride):
We met at a party in summer 2005. It was at a mutual friend’s house. I worked with Ian and Chris had just joined his band. Fast forward to Fall, and we had seen each other a bit, I’d even seen his band play. We kept running into each other, and had become part of the same crowd. We ate lunch together once a week (along with our friend Ian). We spent Tuesday nights at the same party every week. It was there that we realized we had a lot of common interests. He not so subtly would lean closer and closer to me throughout each night as we sat in the kitchen of this house party. Finally, after a year of hanging out at parties and with other friends, we took the plunge and started dating. We were inseparable from that moment on. I spent the next semester working in Disney World so we would spend hours on the phone every day. We even watched entire football games together since my roommates were not sports fans. If he could put up with me being 1000 miles away so soon after we started dating, I figured he was a keeper.
The proposal story, as told by the groom:
To say that I had a plan for my proposal is like a bunch of high school kids sitting in their parent’s basement saying ‘we should start a band!’
First I should point out that Lisa has never been a jewelry person. No bracelets, necklaces, earrings, nothing. She not so subtly stated to friends of ours she didn’t want an engagement ring. As an alternative, she said that she wanted a hand-made rocking chair. This knowledge in hand, I set out to make me (her?) a rocking chair.
Fortunately, at that time I had a co-worker who did a lot of woodworking and a woodworking hobby shop on the base where I work. I asked him how tough it would be to make a rocking chair having no experience (outside of some terrible carvings in boy scouts) with wood working. He replied that he had not even tried something like that because of the difficulty of the rockers. Needless to say his response was a bit of a downer.
Unfettered, I started reading up on woodworking techniques and looking how I was going to actually try to go about this. Then things went from bad to worse; due to budget cuts, the wood-hobby shop on base was closing down, with no plans to reopen in the future. I was gutted, I felt like I was back to square one.
During one of our Friday visits to the local wine bar with our friends, Lisa hinted that rather than a rocking chair from scratch, she’d be ok with one that had be refurbished (ok hinted may not be the right word, “just propose already” might be a better phrasing). I also discovered that a friend of ours had a small woodworking set up in his garage. Confidence buoyed, I set about searching through the myriad of antique shops around town (we live in a beach town in southern Maryland, we probably have as many antique shops as we have gas stations) for a rocking chair I could fix up. Easy right?
Right about this time, I signed up to race in my first Ironman. For those unfamiliar, an Ironman is a triathlon that is just long. And when I say long, I mean “I’m hoping to finish in less than 15 hours long.” Unsurprisingly, a race that will take 15 hours to complete takes up a fair amount of time to get ready for. Training six days a week, with weekends being almost completely dedicated to running, biking and driving to various smaller races to prepare began to eat up most of my free time.
During my various training runs and rides, I would think to myself “man, this is race is probably going to be a day I’ll remember forever, why not make it even better and propose after the race!” With previously stated lack of free time, this seemed like a pipe dream at best, but at this point, Lisa and I had been together for almost six and a half years and had owned a house together for the last three; this proposal was a long time coming and there probably wasn’t going to be a better chance (debatable of course, but your brain probably isn’t functioning at 100% when it’s 85 degrees and has been on a bike for five hours).
Click inside for the rest of Lisa & Chris’ bowling alley engagement pictures AND the rest of the proposal story!